A practitioner from the very beginning, Jagdeesh’s 30 year professional engagement has been on interrelated issues of poverty and environmental degradation and on ‘systems thinking’ at the interface of ecology, society and economy. After handling critical functions in building a learning team of practitioners and strategic visioning of the organisation, Jagdeesh took on his currently held role as Chief Executive of the Foundation for Ecological Security (FES) in 2001.
From the beginning of his career, Jagdeesh was among those few, advancing new ideas about ‘the Commons’ - community forests, pastures and water bodies — that the tragedy of over exploitation is not inevitable, that regulation and privatization are not necessarily the solution, and that those who live closest to and use common resources, and know most about the situation, can engage in negotiating and enforcing cooperative strategies for use and stewardship. Today those ideas have taken hold and Jagdeesh is recognized as a Champion leader in the discipline.
Jagdeesh has been conferred the prestigious ‘Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship’ for 2015 and more recently, he has been selected for the Mulago Conservation Fellowship 2017. A graduate in Agricultural Sciences, Jagdeesh completed his post-graduation in Rural Management from the Institute of Rural Management, India and followed it up with a post-graduate degree in Forestry for Rural Development from the International Institute for Aerospace Survey and Earth Sciences, Netherlands. His current areas of interest include conservation planning (of forests and water), Commons, decentralized governance, biodiversity informatics, history of science and law, and systems thinking.